Tom grew up in Milwaukee, bartended in Wauwatosa in the '70s and moved here in 1984.
Commentary, observations and musings about the outdoors, life in general and maybe Tosa politics and personalities will be the order of the day. He savors a lively debate as much as terrific cooking.
By the time you read this I'll be back in the woods for my fourth consecutive day of hunting the elusive wild turkey.
I've been thinking that elusive is an understatement. These birds are downright stubborn in their resolve to remain off of my serving platter. And I am gradually building-up a sleep deficit crawling out of the sack at 4:00 AM to seek them out. The consequence of this is I have to be very careful of setting-up in the spring sunshine or there just might be some snoozing happening.
Yesterday morning I worked a gobbler for more than a half-hour and he never revealed himself. For the balance of the day my only sightings were a couple of solitary hens spotted betwixt hours of boredom.
Speaking of boredom - you can always kill time while sitting at the base of a tree by taking pictures of yourself with your Blackberry while checking your day job email.
I passed on six Jakes on Wednesday. Another eight on Thursday. I haven't had a gobbler in my sights yet.
I talked with my wife last night. I shared with her my frustration. She's a marvelous person which is largely why I married her in the first place. She said to me - Tom, hang in there, the big guy's probably nearby. And remember, it's called hunting, not shopping.
As if it couldn't get more complicated - it is raining this morning.
Give thanks for Gore-Tex.
Updated - 3 PM
They say that persistence pays. A little bit of luck also helps.
The rain was spitting on and off this morning. I had another gobbler responding to my calling for more than a half-hour. I'd give him a come-hither cluck and he'd respond with a thunderous gobble. Back and forth we went. Cluck, cluck. Gobble. Putt, putt. Gobble, gobble. Yelp, yelp, cluck. GOBBLE! Like I said - this went on for more than 30 minutes. This fella was out of my view but terribly close. And being very coy about my advances.
I'm thinking - Play it cool Tom. Patience is a virtue. Just keep him interested. He's bound to step into the open soon or later.
He was gone.
It was after this adrenaline rush that I decided to close my eyes and take a snooze. I figure there is nothing like a little nap to make things happen.
Trust me it always works.
I was out for only 10 minutes or so when I awoke to to a soft - putt, putt, putt, putt.
Peeking through a crack in the window of the blind I see a lone hen meandering down the trail in my direction.
Another lone hen. Humpf. That's all you've seen for a couple of days now. So what else is new.
Just about the time I was reaching for the camera to take her picture a big old gobbler sashays into view. Strutting and pirouetting as he follows the lady. Who is heading directly towards me. With her suiter in tow.
I lift my trusty Mossberg from my lap and put the glow sight on the big tom's head.
Steady. Wait for him to come closer. Steady. Closer. Inhale. Exhale. Squeeze the trigger.
And he's a dandy. Twenty-two pounds and a nine-inch beard.
Now if you'll excuse me Sid and I are going walleye fishing.